Fears of job cuts, public spending reductions and a double dip recession have led to UK property prices beginning to fall back once again. However, a new generation of buyers looking to live in the heart of Bristol is driving demand and prices in the historic city.
As the recession began to bite, many people were sceptical that the regeneration of the Harbourside area of the city would be a success. However, just forty of the luxury apartments in the development remain for sale and half of the properties at the new Great Western site alongside Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s iconic SS Great Britain have been sold in just four months.
George Cardale, a local estate agent, said, “There has been plenty of talk about a slump in the housing market but Bristol is one of our best performing offices in the country.”
Downsizing to the city
The majority of buyers reserving the luxury properties are not young, upwardly mobile professionals but people in their fifties and sixties looking to downsize. They are people whose children have left home are who are now looking to move back to the centre of the city.
Mr Cardale added, “About 50 per cent of the people we deal with are in this bracket and are looking to downsize. Many of them live in the country and are looking to move back into the city for quality of life.”
Bristol prices bucking the national trend
Whilst both the Nationwide and the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) have reported that property prices fell in the UK last month, estate agents in Bristol are seeing something very different. According to local experts, prices in the city have risen by an astonishing eight per cent in the last month and are now approaching levels not seen since the boom in 2007.